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Colorado Closes Homestand Against Ottawa

The clubs meet for the second time in 10 days

by Danielle Bernstein @danibernstein / ColoradoAvalanche.com

The Colorado Avalanche will close out a four-game homestand on Saturday evening, hosting the Ottawa Senators at Pepsi Center. It's the second and final contest between the two teams, who met just nine days ago at Canadian Tire Centre, where the Senators earned a 2-1 win.

Ottawa enters Saturday's tilt on a five-game winning streak and sits in second place in the Atlantic Division, just two points behind the division-leading Montreal Canadiens. Colorado has won two consecutive games for the fourth time this season and is 2-1-0 on its current homestand.

Colorado is 8-4-1 overall against Ottawa at home and has won four of its last five against the Senators at Pepsi Center.

Video: Altitude previews Colorado vs. Ottawa

Last Time Out

Colorado won its second straight game with a 3-2 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Thursday night. Francois Beauchemin potted the game-winning goal with 1:14 remaining in regulation, his first game-winner of the season. Nathan MacKinnon and Rene Bourque also scored for Colorado, and Calvin Pickard finished with 25 saves and an assist, the third of his career and second of the season.

Ottawa topped the Arizona Coyotes 3-2 in overtime on Thursday. Erik Karlsson scored twice, including the game-winner in the extra frame, and added an assist to lead the Senators. Mike Condon made 39 saves for Ottawa, which was outshot 41-31.

Last Time They Met

Despite a 40-save performance from Calvin Pickard, the Avalanche fell 2-1 in the first meeting with Ottawa on March 2. Both of the Senators' goals were off the stick of Alexandre Burrows, who was playing in his first game with Ottawa after being acquired just before the trade deadline. Trailing 2-0 in the third period, Rene Bourque scored to bring the Avalanche within one, but Colorado was unable to find the equalizer. Craig Anderson started in net for Ottawa, stopping 22-of-23 shots.

What to Watch

Avs Look to Continue Momentum

With two straight victories on home ice, Colorado is looking to win a third consecutive game for the first time this season. The Avalanche has three two-game winning streaks this season, but only once-the most recent set of back-to-back wins against Winnipeg and Montreal-have both victories come at home.

From the coaching staff to the players, the Avs have emphasized positivity and sticking together no matter how bleak things may look throughout the current homestand, something they hope to carry through the remainder of the regular season.

"We're being positive, celebrating little things," netminder Calvin Pickard said following Colorado's 3-2 win over New Jersey on Thursday. "We got to be positive in here, on the ice, and we've been working, too. We've been working hard and playing our game, and when we do that we're going to have success."

Ottawa Power Play

While Ottawa's power play ranks 21st overall in the league with a 17.6-percent success rate, it's been far more successful on the road. The Senators have cashed in on 21.2 percent of their opportunities away from Canadian Tire Centre, giving them the seventh-ranked road power-play unit in the NHL.

Defenseman Erik Karlsson leads the Senators with 13 man-advantage points (two goals, 11 assists) on the road, while Mike Hoffman (five goals and six assists) and Dion Phaneuf (three goals and seven assists) have also been big road contributors on the power play.

Player to Watch

Colorado: Defenseman Tyson Barrie

Barrie has totaled four points over his last two outings and leads all Avalanche defensemen in goals (six), assists (25) and points (31) this season. He has seven points (one goal, six assists) in seven career contests against Ottawa and has tallied at least a point in his last four games against the Sens.

Ottawa: Left wing Alexandre Burrows

Since being acquired by the Senators on Feb. 27, Burrows has tallied three goals and four points, which are tied for first and third on the team, respectively. Two of the former Vancouver Canuck's goals came against the Avalanche on March 2, and he's totaled 29 points (13 goals, 16 assists) in 55 career contests against Colorado.

The Details

Saturday's game between the Avs and the Sens begins at 5 p.m., and tickets are still available. Fans can also visit the NHL Centennial Fan Arena in the Camry South Lot on the Pepsi Center grounds beginning at 10 a.m. and up until puck drop. Photo opportunities with the Stanley Cup will be available from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., and Avs alumni Milan Hejduk, Pierre Turgeon and Ken Klee will be there taking part in a Q&A session and signing autographs from 3:30-4:30 p.m.

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